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Thursday, November 03, 2016

Westfield Teacher Arrested for Marijuana Possession

The following was reported in TAPinto Westfield. 
October 27, 2016 3:42 pm.  
Officer Domanoski and Officer Doherty arrested Mercedes Poyntz, age 56, of Westfield, NJ, for  of a controlled dangerous substance (marijuana) under 50 grams pursuant to a motor vehicle stop in the area of Tamaques Way and Norwood Drive. Subject was transported to Westfield Police Department headquarters where she was processed and released on a complaint summons.

In 2011, another Westfield teacher was arrested for possession of marijuana.  The following was reported in the Star Ledger newspaper  

WESTFIELD — A fourth-grade teacher and coach of two high school sports teams was charged with marijuana possession last week, authorities said.  Brendan Hickey, a 31-year-old Scotch Plains man, had a “small bag of marijuana” in his car when officers stopped him on Feb. 9, said Capt. Cliff Auchter, a spokesman for Westfield police. Officers searched the car after smelling marijuana, Auchter said. He was arrested and charged with possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana after it was “easily determined to be a small amount,” the captain said. He was released on a ticket to appear in court.Hickey teaches at McKinley Elementary School and coaches high school ice hockey and girls lacrosse in Westfield, according to the school district’s website.

Should New Jersey legalize marijuana possession for personal use?  Poll question located to the right of TFoTM webpage. 


  1. Heard she might have been driving her college son's car and she was in the wrong car at the wrong time.

  2. Cheech and Chong would be proud

  3. Question for TFOTM... In the Brendan Hickey case, how did that one get handled? Did he remain a teacher at McKinley? Did he remain as a coach for boys ice hockey and girls lacrosse? To the extent these cases may be similar, it might be interesting to see if the treatment ends up the same or different.

    1. Brendan Hickey returned to the classroom and continues to coach in the Westfield school district as of 2016.

  4. TFOTM... On a completely unrelated topic... Over the past few years, I've seen little reporting about the Central/Clover intersection. Did accidents finally settle down or has the (mainstream) media just not been reporting such accidents? Just curious. Thanks in advance for your response and for all the great work you do-- some of us appreciate your work very much!!!

    1. The Westfield Town Council and the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders continued to point fingers at each other regarding who had the authority to give the construction of the pedestrian Hawk light the go-ahead. In the end, it was determined that Mayor Skibitsky and the town council had the final say about the installation and location of the light.

      Despite accident statistics, town engineering reports, traffic surveys, and public input at neighborhood outreach meetings, Mayor Skibitsky and the town council chose the current location of the pedestrian crossing. Clover St. and even Cedar were both recommended as a safer alternative based on statistics, but politics weighed heavily in the final decision.

      Accidents continue to plague the location however, when reported, it appears they are being entered into police department databases as having occurred near, or at, the intersection of Central Ave. & Clover St.

      Accident reports filled out by the responding officers include "nearest intersection" to be filled out on the report. Central Ave. & Cambridge Ave. is no longer an "intersection," since Mayor Skibitsky led the town council in closing the street and making it a cul-de-sac, therefore the nearest intersection to an accident that occurs at the Hawk light pedestrian crossing is the Central & Clover intersection.

      When TFoTM was compiling stats, including accident scene photos, that were ultimately presented to the town council, proving that accidents that were being listed at the Clover St. & Central Ave. actually occurred at or near the Hawk Pedestrian Crossing, Mayor Skibitsky continued to claim the current mid-block location is safer than at the intersection of Clover St. & Central Ave. Mayor Skibitsky's claim was proved to be false by citing accident statistics from national traffic surveys done by the engineer that invented the Hawk Pedestrian Light.
      In the end, politics won.

  5. Thanks for your Central/Clover update. I appreciate your response to my question.